Continuous Improvement Sayings and Quotes

Below you will find our collection of inspirational, wise, and humorous old continuous improvement quotes, continuous improvement sayings, and continuous improvement proverbs, collected over the years from a variety of sources.

The world we have created is a product of our thinking; it cannot be changed without changing our thinking. Albert Einstein
If I had one hour to save the world, I would spend fifty-five minutes defining the problem and only five minutes finding the solution. Albert Einstein
A corporation is a living organism; it has to continue to shed its skin. Methods have to change. Focus has to change. Values have to change. The sum total of those changes is transformation. Andrew Grove
The journey is never ending. There’s always gonna be growth, improvement, adversity; you just gotta take it all in and do what’s right, continue to grow, continue to live in the moment. Antonio Brown
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but habit. Aristotle
Improvement begins with I. Arnold H. Glasow
The only way of finding the limits of the possible is by going beyond them into the impossible. Arthur C. Clarke
Watch the little things; a small leak will sink a great ship. Benjamin Franklin
The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency. Bill Gates
Continuous improvement is not about the things you do well — that’s work. Continuous improvement is about removing the things that get in the way of your work. The headaches, the things that slow you down, that’s what continuous improvement is all about. Bruce Hamilton
I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times. Bruce Lee
It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird: it would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg. C. S. Lewis
It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives, but the one most responsive to change. Charles Darwin
To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others. Live in the faith that the whole world is on your side as long as you are true to the best that is in you. Christian D Larson
Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all. Dale Carnegie
Some people don’t like change, but you need to embrace change if the alternative is disaster. Elon Musk
I think it’s very important to have a feedback loop, where you’re constantly thinking about what you’ve done and how you could be doing it better. Elon Musk
You shouldn’t do things differently just because they’re different. They need to be… better. Elon Musk
First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. Epictetus
I cannot say whether things will get better if we change; what I can say is they must change if they are to get better. Georg C. Lichtenberg
If you think of standardization as the best that you know today, but which is to be improved tomorrow; you get somewhere. Henry Ford
If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got. Henry Ford
The man who will use his skill and constructive imagination to see how much he can give for a dollar, instead of how little he can give for a dollar, is bound to succeed. Henry Ford
The common question that gets asked in business is, ‘why?’ That’s a good question, but an equally valid question is, ‘why not? Jeff Bezos
One of the only ways to get out of a tight box is to invent your way out. Jeff Bezos
Without a Standard, there is no logical basis for decision making or taking action. Joseph M. Juran
The Hacker Way is an approach to building that involves continuous improvement and iteration. Hackers believe that something can always be better, and that nothing is ever complete. Mark Zuckerberg
Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. Martin Luther King
It is impossible to improve any process until it is standardized. If the process is shifting from here to there, then any improvement will just be one more variation that is occasionally used and mostly ignored. One must standardize, and thus stabilize the process, before continuous improvement can be made. Masaaki Imai
There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all. Peter F. Drucker
Quality is free. It’s not a gift, but it’s free. The ‘unquality’ things are what cost money. Phil Crosby
The range of what we think and do is limited by what we fail to notice. And because we fail to notice that we fail to notice there is little we can do to change until we notice how failing to notice shapes our thoughts and deeds. R. D. Laing
The most dangerous kind of waste is the waste we do not recognize. Shigeo Shingo
I have a great respect for incremental improvement, and I’ve done that sort of thing in my life, but I’ve always been attracted to the more revolutionary changes. I don’t know why. Because they’re harder. They’re much more stressful emotionally. And you usually go through a period where everybody tells you that you’ve completely failed. Steve Jobs
Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected. Steve Jobs
Costs do not exist to be calculated. Costs exist to be reduced. Taiichi Ohno
All we are doing is looking at the timeline, from the moment the customer gives us an order to the point when we collect the cash. And we are reducing the time line by reducing the non-value adding wastes. Taiichi Ohno
Something is wrong if workers do not look around each day, find things that are tedious or boring, and then rewrite the procedures. Even last month’s manual should be out of date. Taiichi Ohno
When you are out observing on the gemba, do something to help them. If you do, people will come to expect that you can help them and will look forward to seeing you again on the gemba. Taiichi Ohno
Almost all quality improvement comes via simplification of design, manufacturing, layout, processes, and procedures. Tom Peters
Excellent firms don’t believe in excellence – only in constant improvement and constant change. Tom Peters
Even perfection has room for improvement. Ty Warner
Never to be satisfied with how things are. To succeed in this world, you have to change all the time. unknown
A bad system will beat a good person every time. W. Edwards Deming
It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory. W. Edwards Deming
Eighty-five percent of the reasons for failure are deficiencies in the systems and process rather than the employee. The role of management is to change the process rather than badgering individuals to do better. W. Edwards Deming
It’s better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behavior is better than yours and you’ll drift in that direction. Warren Buffett
The business schools reward difficult complex behavior more than simple behavior, but simple behavior is more effective. Warren Buffett
Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives. William A. Foster
Learning is not compulsory; it's voluntary. Improvement is not compulsory; it's voluntary. But to survive, we must learn. W Edwards Deming
Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better. Maya Angelou
Passion for knowledge, motivation for continuous learning. Lailah Gifty Akita
Persistence, perseverance, and continuous improvement are the ingredients for forming a successful person. Debasish Mridha
Great things are done by a series of small things brought together. Vincent Van Gough
There is always room for improvement. Rich Gunnell
Man cannot really improve himself without improving others. Charles Dickens
If you know you can do better then do better. Anonymous
When you reach the top, keep ascending, otherwise you start descending. Lincoln Patz
Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence. Vince Lombardi
Practice the philosophy of continuous improvement. Get a little bit better every single day. Brian Tracy
Continuous improvement is better than delayed perfection. Mark Twain
Continuous improvement requires systematic evaluation. Continuous improvement requires unfiltered evaluation. Anonymous
Do not be afraid of improving slowly. Be afraid of standing still. Leo Babauta
It's the little things you do that make the big things happen. Mike Dooley
Continuous improvement is the only cultural value that could unify an organization as large and diverse as ours. Anonymous
The widespread availability of information is the only basis for effective day-to-day problem solving, which abets continuous improvement programs. Tom Peters
He who stops being better stops being good. Oliver Cromwell
There is always one more thing to learn. Steve Jobs
Improve quality, you automatically improve productivity. W Edwards Deming
It's not about money or connections, it's the willingness to out work and outlearn everyon. And if it fails, you learn from what happened and do a better job next time. Mark Cuban
Excellence is not a destination, it is a continuous journey that never ends. Brian Tracy
If you define the problem correctly, you almost have the solution. Steve Jobs
Improvement usually means doing something that we have never done before. Shigeo Shingo
Without change there is no innovation, creativity, or incentive for improvement. Those who initiate change will have a better opportunity to manage the change that is inevitable. William Pollard
Never neglect an opportunity for improvement. William Jones
Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement, and success have no meaning. Benjamin Franklin
There is only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that's your own self. Aldous Huxley
Attempt the impossible in order to improve your work. Bette Davis
It is important to foster individuality, for only the individual can produce the new ideas. Albert Einstein
If you do not know how to ask the right question, you discover nothing. W.E. Deming
The greatest performance improvement of all is when a system goes from not-working to working. John Ousterhout
The improvement of understanding is for two ends: first, our own increase of knowledge; secondly, to enable us to deliver that knowledge to others. John Locke
Anticipate the difficult by managing the easy. Lao Tzu
One percent improvement in 1,000 things is better than 1,000% improvement in one thing. Tom Peters
The self is not something ready-made, but something in continuous formation through choice of action. John Dewey
We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. Albert Einstein
Change equals self improvement. Push yourself to places you haven't been before. Pat Summitt
Strive for continuous improvement, instead of perfection. Kim Collins
The thing is, continuity of strategic direction and continuous improvement in how you do things are absolutely consistent with each other. In fact, they're mutually reinforcing. Michael Porter
Unless you try to do something beyond you have already mastered, you will never grow. Anonymous
Continual improvement is an unending journey. Lloyd Dobens
We cannot become what we want to be by remaining what we are. Max Depree
If you're not getting better, you're getting worse. Pat Riley
There's no limit possible to the expansion of each one of us. Charles Schwab
There is no exercise better for the improvement of our world than reaching down on a daily basis to lift someone up. Melchor Lim
Self knowledge is the beginning of self improvement. Baltasar Gracian
To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often. Winston Churchill
People never improve unless they look to some standard or example higher or better than themselves. Tryon Edwards
Don't demand perfection. But insist on continuous improvement. Anonymous

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